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Is It Possible to Really Know God?


April 13, 2017

  • Video
  • Spiritual Growth
  • New

When you think about God, who do you imagine He is?

The truth is, what we think about God is the most important thing about us. That’s because what we think about God impacts every attitude, thought, and action we take.

If we see him as a vengeful judge, we’ll always feel guilty. If we see him as an apathetic father, we will struggle with believing he loves us. If we think he’s just like us, we’ll be casual about our sin.

Many of us have formed a picture of God from impressions we’ve picked up throughout our life. Consciously, or unconsciously, our families, teachers, friends, and churches have impacted our view of Him.

Our culture consistently sends us messages about how to see God as well. Over time, this has caused all of us to carry a distorted image of God.

As a result, it’s natural to wonder … is it even possible to see God just as He is?

Can we really, in this life say, “I’ve seen all of God”? The answer is yes – and no. Yes, we can know God truly, but no, we cannot know him exhaustively.

We may not be able to see God face to face, while we’re still in our physical state, but we can see Him to the degree He reveals himself to us. We can receive genuine, compelling, and accurate knowledge of God.

That doesn’t mean God is a passive object of study for us to put under our limited microscopes. On the contrary, He is intimately involved in self-revelation.

In fact, his revelation to us will depend largely on his relationship to us. First Corinthians 2:12 describes this basic process: “We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.”

It is only when we are born a second time as a result of having turned from our sin and receiving Christ as our Savior that the Holy Spirit comes in. The Spirit gives us the ability to understand what we already possess in Christ.

So what’s our part in seeing God as He really is?

Seeing God is not a laid-back spectator sport. It will require everything in our being, our heart, and our emotions. Our life must say to God, “I want to see you. I long to know you.”

Both the Old and New Testaments include promises about this process. God tells us through Jeremiah:

If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. (Jeremiah 29:13)

Jesus also describes this process:

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. (Luke 11:9-10)

God promises that when we seek Him, we will find Him. He also promises to give us the Spirit we need in order to know Him if we ask.

So what about you… Are you seeking Him? Are you asking? Are you knocking? Are you praying, “God, I want to know you”?

There’s nothing more important than getting an accurate view of God. My hope and prayer is that God will do for you what he’s been doing in me since I began my study of him – expanding your mind and enlarging your heart as you seek Him and begin to see God as He longs to be seen.

To learn more about how to seek and know God, download our new, free family devotional: Real Conversations About the Real God. It offers a series of videos along with a downloadable discussion guide to help you and your kids begin to identify common misconceptions and exchange them for the view God has given us of himself.

Watch the first family devotional video in the series: Vending Machine.

About Chip Ingram

Chip Ingram is the senior pastor of Venture Christian Church in Los Gatos, California, and teaching pastor and president of Living on the Edge. A pastor for over thirty years, Chip has a unique ability to communicate truth and challenge people to live out their faith. He is the author of 15 books, including The Real God, Culture Shock and The Real Heaven. Chip and his wife Theresa have four grown children and eleven grandchildren.

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